Liliana Besosa '15

Liliana is a senior at the College of William and Mary pursuing a joint degree in International Relations with the University of St Andrews in Scotland. Originally from Ponce, Puerto Rico, Liliana has spent a majority of her childhood growing up around the world and hopes to continue traveling and working abroad. This past summer, Liliana worked for an NGO is Lusaka, Zambia and then went on to intern with the Department of Health and Human Services as well as the Department of Defense before returning back to William and Mary. Currently she is interning with the Department of State Foreign Service US Embassy in Zambia and hopes to be able to travel back to Zambia this upcoming summer. On campus, Liliana is involved with club volleyball and is also a member of Delta Delta Delta. She is passionate about Latin American, European, and African politics and is excited to experience this wonderful opportunity. In her spare time she likes to travel, workout, and try new recipes.  

Ashton Chappell '15

Ashton Chappell is currently a senior at the College majoring in Chemistry. After graduating from high school in California, she enlisted in the Air Force where she worked in the military intelligence community. After separating from the military she moved to Virginia and began her college education at J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College; she later transferred to William and Mary as a junior. After graduating Ashton intends to pursue a career in medicine. Her interest in participating in this program is how government policies influence medical practice. She is very excited to see Washington D.C. (for the first time!) and learn first-hand how our federal system of government works.  

Lynne Boucher
Madeleine Doherty '14

Maddie is a freshman at the College, majoring in Public Policy. She hopes to both pursue a career in law and become involved in politics. Maddie is a member of Phi Alpha Delta pre-law fraternity. When home in Loudoun County, VA, Maddie works as a Starbucks barista. She has also served as a summer intern at the Island Moving Company, a contemporary Ballet company in Newport, RI. In her free time, Maddie enjoys community service work, reading, and dance.

Juliet Downie '18

I am a freshman at William & Mary with widely varying academic interests, and I am currently an undeclared major. I am from Corning, New York, where I developed a love for both museums and glass by volunteering and working at the Corning Museum of Glass. I am excited for the opportunity to study in Washington D.C., and I hope that the experience will help me to learn more about the world, the nation, and myself. On campus, I play the flute in the William & Mary Wind Ensemble, and I am a member of the Student Environmental Action Coalition and the Committee on Sustainability. I also volunteer through the Campus Buddies program and the Ruritan Club. I enjoy reading novels and non-fiction books, listening to NPR, cooking, dancing, and playing music, and I am always eager to listen to a thought-provoking lecture or participate in a stimulating discussion.

Phoebe Galt ‘17

Phoebe, a sophomore at the College, is a prospective government and religious studies double major. Born in Colorado, she has grown up in Taiwan, India, China, Belgium, and northern Virginia. On campus, Phoebe is happy to serve as President of the Class of 2017 for the second year, and fundraising chair for the Women's Club Ultimate Frisbee Team. She is also an active member of salsa club and saxophone ensemble. In her free time, she enjoys watching Disney movies, tossing a disc, splashing in creeks, and eating. Phoebe worked in Public Affairs at the State Department last summer, largely in promotion of civil society abroad. She is excited to further explore the different branches of the government, their interconnectedness, and the role that the U.S. plays in the world.

Mariam Khan '16

Mariam is a Junior at the College of William & Mary, majoring in Public Policy and minoring in Mathematics. The selection of her academic program and the combination of coursework is based on her belief that public policy decisions should be data driven. The sharing and caring nature of William & Mary is the most attractive aspect of her college life.  She has great admiration for the accomplishments of many William & Mary alumni. During the past two summers, she interned in the offices of Congressman Frank Wolf and Senator Mark Warner.  During these internships, she developed a good understanding of how the two components of the U.S. Congress, House of Representatives and the Senate, function in the legislative process.  

Mai Kondo
Mai Kondo '17

I am junior and an exchange student from Keio University in Tokyo, Japan. I grew up in Tokyo and it is my first time to leave my home land for a long time.

I came to hold a concern about political and social structure in the United States as I had learned about American Literature in the faculty of English in my home university, for when we read a literary work, it is very important to understand such background knowledge at the age where the writer lived. Also, learning American Literature made me concerned about gender and race issues, so I hope I could gain knowledge about women's rights and human rights in the United States through this seminar. Taking part in this Winter seminar is a big challenge for me, but I will try to contribute to the class by offering Japanese perspectives.

Kathryn McGovern ‘15

Kathryn is a senior from Charlottesville, Virginia majoring in Accounting with a Finance concentration.  After interning with the National Endowment for the Arts during the 2013 W&M DC Summer Institute, Kathryn returned to the DC area in 2014 for a summer internship with Deloitte. On campus, she is a member of Alpha Phi Omega, Circle K International, and the tap dancing group Rhythm and Taps.  During her free time, she enjoys reading theme park blogs, watching movies, and playing the piano.  Kathryn is joining Deloitte’s audit practice in 2015, and she is excited to explore her future home and workplace while expanding her political awareness and understanding through the Washington Winter Seminar. 

Jennifer Moore '16

Jennifer is a sophomore at the College of William and Mary pursuing a double major in International Relations and Russian Post-Soviet Studies.  A native of Chesterfield, Virginia (outside of Richmond), she is a member of William and Mary Club Water Polo.  She has interned at the Virginia General Assembly in Richmond and the State Department; Russia/ Eurasia Division.  During the summer of 2013, Jennifer had the opportunity to study abroad in St. Petersburg, Russia.  While abroad, she learned about her passion for Eastern European and Russian history and politics.  After college, she hopes to work in the international relations field, hopefully with the United States government.  In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, reading, sports, scuba diving, listening to music, and doing anything unique and adventurous.  She is looking forward to experiencing and exploring the culture of Washington, D.C. this winter, gaining valuable work experience, and broadening her network!

Allison Reading '16
Michael Silvidi ‘17

Michael Silvidi is a sophomore at William & Mary from Muncie, Indiana pursuing a double major in Government and Chinese Studies. During the summer of 2014 he worked as a geocoder for AidData, a research consortium that aims to improve the transparency of development finance information. On campus, Michael assists Professor Maurits van der Veen of the Government department with research on international development in Nepal, and continues to work with AidData part time. His academic interests are in development, international security, and East Asian politics. In his free time, he enjoys traveling, watching game shows, and participating in as many intramural sports as possible. Michael is looking forward to studying in D.C. and learning about potential career options.

Monique Spain ‘16

Monique Spain is a junior at The College of William & Mary pursing a major in public policy with a minor in public health. After graduating, she plans to start a career in medical/health policy and is excited to be studying in DC this winter where she can gain a greater understanding of how politics affects public health policies.  Due to her father being an active-duty Marine, Monique’s passion for government originated at an early age; she and her family have lived in five different states and two European countries, and now live in the DC suburb of Arlington, VA. Taking advantage of the countless opportunities DC has to offer, she held two summer internships at the U.S. Department of State in 2010 and 2011 and was also a member of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Mentorship Program for her junior and senior of high school. On campus Monique is a member of Students Helping Honduras Club. 

Elizabeth Stewart  '17

Liz is a sophomore at the College planning to major in International Relations with a German Studies minor. Having grown up abroad due to her parents working for the government, Liz has always held a keen interest in how the United States government shapes foreign policy and the interworkings of  Washington D.C. On campus she is a member of a social sorority, a delegate on the Panhellenic Council, a Tribe Ambassador for the Admissions Office and involved with Amnesty International. Liz is looking forward to better understand how the policy-making process works and the key players that influence policy creation. 

Claudia Trigo Valdez '15

Claudia is a current senior at William and Mary, and is pursuing a double major in Public Policy and Psychology.  She hopes to work in international aid and development, and would love to live abroad again at some point in the near future. She is a campus tour guide, a member of Pi Beta Phi Fraternity, and the Student Alumni Council. Originally from Tegucigalpa, Honduras, she is a fluent Spanish speaker, and loves everything about her Latino roots- especially the food. In her spare time, Claudia loves to travel, hike, and cook. Although she grew up in Northern Virginia, she is excited to spend time in D.C. in an academic capacity, and meet all of the speakers! 

Lubai Yang '16

Lubai Yang is a sophomore pursuing a double major in Economics and International relations at the College of William and Mary. He has strong interests in the field of consulting. Raised and born in northeast China, Lubai is now enjoying his third year in the US. Besides Chinese and English, he also speaks Japanese and German. Last summer, he spent two and a half months backpacking around Europe while attending summer school in Potsdam, Germany. He loves to travel and learn foreign languages because he is convinced that it is the best way to learn about different cultures. On campus, he is a member of Kappa Alpha Order and the vice president of the Chinese Undergraduate Student Association. He can work efficiently and effectively with people from diverse backgrounds and always bring creativity to the team. He cannot wait to explore DC this winter and find out more about his passions.

Benming Zhang '16

Benny is currently in his junior year at The College of William and Mary and majors in Public Policy. A native of New York, he graduated from Choate Rosemary Hall, a New England preparatory high school, in 2012. On campus, Benny is a Kappa Sigma brother, serving a four-year term on the Public Housing Advisory Committee on behalf of the City of Williamsburg, interning for Virginia State Senator and Majority Leader Thomas K. Norment, Jr., and is currently leading a political action committee, The StudentImpact, that he co-founded. Benny is excited about the opportunity to explore the domestic and international political arena, to meet stakeholders from all levels and areas of government, and to experience Washington D.C.

Ben Ernst '15